Tahlequah Daily Press

Thunder/NBA

February 21, 2014

Durant suing former accountant over tax troubles

OKLAHOMA CITY — Thunder forward Kevin Durant is suing his former accountant for $600,000 over what the star NBA star says are mistakes on his taxes.

Attorneys for Durant said in the lawsuit filed last month that California-based accountant Joel Lynn Elliott deducted some personal expenses as business expenses on Durant's taxes without proper documentation.

Durant hired Elliott to do his taxes based on his then-agent's advice, the lawsuit said, and Elliott prepared Durant's personal taxes and taxes for his company, K. Durant Enterprises, from 2007 to 2011.

In one instance, K. Durant Enterprises paid for travel for Durant and other employees totaling more than $1 million. Some of that travel, however, was for personal reasons, but it was deducted as a business expense, the lawsuit said.

"In preparing a client's tax returns, a reasonable prudent accountant would have conducted a basic inquiry and sought documentation to confirm that each travel expensed for which a deduction was recorded was truly business related," the lawsuit said.

Elliott also deducted Durant's personal chef as a business expense, according to the lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California.

The lawsuit stated that Durant will now have to amend his taxes, pay back taxes, interests and possibly penalties. The star player is suing Elliott for professional negligence, breach of fiduciary duty and breach of contract. He's seeking $200,000 for each of the three counts.

Lawyers for Durant and Elliott didn't immediately return phone messages left Thursday seeking comment.

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